While the world is still reeling from the backlash of the Covid-19 virus, and wrestling with the outbreak of the monkeypox virus, another highly contagious and even deadlier zoonotic virus has jumped onto the scene. Two persons have already died in Ghana, West Africa after being infected with the Marburg virus as the health authorities scramble to trace backwards and isolate potentially infected persons.
The Marburg virus spreads through bodily fluids and through physical contact. It can also spread to surfaces and later infect people who come in contact with those surfaces even though they didn’t have actual human-to-human contact with an infected person. Healthcare workers are at the highest risk as the Marburg virus rips across the West African country of Ghana. Bodies of persons who died from the Marburg virus can also transmit the diseases, so extreme care is needed when disposing of the bodies of persons who were victims of the Marburg virus.
The Marburg virus is similar in structure to the deadly and highly contagious Ebola virus which ravaged Africa a few years ago. There is currently no vaccine for the Marburg virus which has a fatality rate of up to 90%. Compared to the Covid-19 virus, the Marburg virus is far deadlier.
According to the CDC, the Marburg virus is a zoonotic virus which jumped to humans from bats. It is suspected to have first infected persons working in mines and caves which were infested with the Rousettus bat colonies.
The Marburg virus got its name from Marburg, Germany – where it was first identified in 1967. It killed 7 person in Germany in the year 1967 after it infected scientists handling monkeys imported from Uganda, Africa. The largest outbreak of the Marburg virus killed 200 persons in Angola in the year 2005.